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The pose in this piece is quite sym­met­ri­cal, usu­ally a sure­fire way to make an im­age feel static or bor­ing, so to counter this I’m em­pha­sis­ing the tilt to his body slightly more, as well as keep­ing the ex­pres­sion un­even. It’s a good idea to check the im­age in re­verse, par­tic­u­larly at this early stage, just to make sure things are bal­anced con­vinc­ingly and not some op­ti­cal bias.

Work that body

Now all but the finest de­tails on the face are done, I start to block in the body, paint­ing di­rectly on the Mr Beef­cake layer. As the drawing I am work­ing over is quite un­de­fined, this in­volves clar­i­fy­ing the mus­cle groups and some fine-tun­ing of pro­por­tions. The pal­ette is fairly limited at this stage, with only a ba­sic ac­knowl­edge­ment of the char­ac­ter’s en­vi­ron­ment.

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